Julie Livingston: Queen for a Day, Quintessence for a Lifetime
Congratulations to Julie Livingston, who recently won the atGeist.com “Queen for a Day” contest. About 50 contestants were nominated by either a friend or relative. Eventually, this pool of nominees was narrowed to five finalists. Many people from our community voted on their favorite candidate via the atgeist.com website. Although all five contestants represented worthy possibilities as “Queen,” Julie Livingston proved to be the lucky winner.
“I had no idea I was even a contestant until I was chosen as one of the five finalists,” says Julie, who was secretly nominated by her daughter, twenty-year-old Nina Livingston, a sophomore at Indiana University. “I am very touched that my daughter would do this for me.” Livingston lives in Geist with her husband, Brian, and their seventeen-year-old son, Nick, a junior at Lawrence North High School.
Upon learning she was a winner of the contest, Livingston unassumingly confessed that she preferred to split the prize package with the other four finalists. She said she did not feel comfortable claiming the prizes for herself. Instead, she would rather share her throne with the other women who were so deserving of this award. As a result of her humbleness, the Geist Harbour Spa and Salon graciously offered to award extra amenities so that each of the five ladies would receive a complimentary service.
Livingston reflects sheer energy from the sprinting tempo of her conversation to the growing list of her accomplishments. She partners as a realtor with her husband at the F.C. Tucker Company’s Geist Office and also does work for Bottom Line Travel Solutions. Among a myriad of volunteer activities, she is the founder of a nonprofit charitable organization called Compassion 4 Kids, which seeks to link those who can help with children in need. Since its inception in 2003, Compassion 4 Kids has distributed hundreds of thousands of dollars in monetary and item donations to benefit orphaned, abandoned, impoverished and at-risk children in Indianapolis and around the world. The organization hosted its most recent humanitarian mission trip to Guatemala over last Thanksgiving, where C4K provided a clean water supply and bathrooms for a remote village school community.
Livingston has always shown a natural compassion for helping children. As early as second grade, Livingston recalls being asked by her teacher to help two of her classmates with their reading each week. On Fridays, the Pepsi truck would come by the school and sell drinks for .25 cents. This was a big deal for all the kids. Livingston noticed that these two boys, who wore extremely tattered and dirty clothes, never had a quarter and couldn’t afford this special treat. One Friday morning, she grabbed three quarters out of her mom’s wallet instead of just one so that these boys could buy a Pepsi. Later, when her mom confronted her for taking the extra quarters, Livingston was surprised she had noticed, and then relieved that her mom understood why she did it. On reflection, she wonders why she didn’t just ask for the money in the first place. She says, “It is this same concept of simply connecting those who are willing to help with the specifics of how they can, which fuels the success of Compassion 4 Kids.”
Livingston’s enthusiasm didn’t stop in elementary school; instead, it kept growing. She continued volunteering throughout high school, including helping at a developmental center for handicapped children. Then in college, she served as a “Big Sister” to a young girl. After a variety of volunteer positions in the Indianapolis community as a young adult, she eventually volunteered at the Ambassadors for Children where she organized many mission trips to locales such as Haiti, Kenya, Vietnam, Ecuador, Cuba, Guatemala, Spain, and a number of places in Mexico.
When founding Compassion 4 Kids in 2003, Livingston felt strongly about including a local outreach component in addition to international relief efforts. Consequently, in 2004, C4K formed a partnership with The Caring Center, a local clothing pantry. C4K committed the resources to expand the pantry’s capacity to also offer food. Now named The Lawrence Caring Center, the pantry is moving from its current location on 46th Street to the Lawrence Education and Community Center (formerly Craig Middle School) on Sunnyside this July.
Livingston welcomes those who wish to volunteer in helping with Compassion 4 Kids and The Lawrence Caring Center. Please visit www.compassion4kids.org or call 317-823-5432 to learn more.
On May 20, Livingston and the other four finalists (Sue Allred, Bev Hartig, Sharon Pence and Karyn Willman) enjoyed some pampering at the Geist Harbour Spa and Salon. They each received a complimentary service such as a haircut, style, massage, manicure, facial, or makeup application. The girls who provided services were Mary, Jessica, Ashley, Allyson, Wendy, Anna and Samantha (www.schedulemyhair.com).
“All of us at Harbour Spa and Salon love any chance we get to give back to our community!” says Mary Brown, co-owner of Harbour Spa and Salon.”We are very happy to be a sponsor for Queen for a Day!”
Livingston also received these following prizes as part of the “Queen for a Day” package:
- A new outfit from Yaprak Design Studio and Boutique;
- A complimentary home cleaning from Krystal Kleen Housekeeping; and
- A free dinner at Michael’s Southshore Restaurant.
Here is a copy of the nomination Nina wrote for her mother:
My mom deserves to be Queen for a Day because she started her own nonprofit organization called Compassion 4 Kids. She also regularly helps out at the Lawrence Caring Center. Julie is always working hard to better the lives of others in our community and in other countries. Many times she is so busy helping others that she barely has time to do something nice for herself! My mom has been a great role model for me and others, always sacrificing her time to do good. I know she deserves and would appreciate being Queen for a Day!
Nina’s letter of recommendation for her mother proved to be a timely one, as we have just celebrated Mother’s Day this past month. This nomination represents a priceless gift from an appreciative daughter to her mother, who sets a perfect example not only for her children but to everyone around the world. Livingston enjoyed her time as Queen for a Day in Geist, but she remains a royal exemplar to everyone who has the opportunity of meeting her.
A special thanks to the generous local sponsors of our “Queen for a Day” contest:
- Geist Harbour Spa and Salon
- Yaprak Design Studio and Boutique
- Krystal Kleen Housekeeping; and
- Michael’s Southshore Restaurant.